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OAAA E-Weekly Newsletter

The Office of African-American Affairs  Newsletter Highlighting Events and Opportunities for OAAA Students

"Young, Gifted & Black:

40 Years of Preparing Students for the Quest"

Special Announcement

OAAA/Gradstar Lunch Series: Thursday in Dubois with Dean Thomas
Thursday, April 14 – 12:00 pm-2:00 pm -- #2 Dawson’s Row – W.E.B. DuBois Conference Room

You are invited to join Dean Antoinette Thomas for the next three weeks to enjoy lunch and conversation. RSVP to by Friday at 12:00 NOON to claim your seat at the table.


The Office of African-American Affairs (OAAA) is on FACEBOOK!

LIKE US to keep up-to-date with events and more info about OAAA!




Spring 2022 Academic Calendar

Dates Vary by school:  
(Go to Add/Drop/Withdrawal Dates)

Tuesday, May 3:    
Courses End

Thursday, May 5 – Friday, May 13:  
(Go to Exam Schedule)

Sunday, May 8 – Wednesday, May 11:  
Reading Days

Friday, May 20 – Sunday, May 22   
Finals Weekend
(Go to Finals Weekend)

Quote of the Week

“I don't mind expressing my opinions and speaking out against injustice. I would be doing this even if I wasn't a writer. I grew up in a household that believed in social justice. I have always understood myself as having an obligation to stand on the side of the silenced, the oppressed, and the mistreated.” – Tayari Jones  

Spotlight on Student Achievements

Renee’ Bryan is a 2nd-year student double majoring in Public Policy & Leadership through the Frank Batten School of Public Policy & Leadership as well as African and African American Studies through the College of Arts and Sciences. She is currently the Director of Vision for Bringing Race into Dialogue Through Group Engagement (BRIDGE), a Resident Advisor (RA) in Gooch, a Peer Advisor, a member of the Student Advisory Committee for the UVA Democracy Initiative, and a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. This year, Renee’ has focused her course work on leadership cultivation and new pathways for systemic education reform. The central focus of her research investigates the ideas as rest for Black students as a form of resistance and the way classrooms can be reformed to be more conducive to learning, growth, and inclusion of all diverse perspectives. Renee’ will continue this work into her 3rd year as she will be serving as a TA for LPPL 2100: The Resilient Student which works towards cultivating leaders and leadership through introspective reflection, growth mindset, and experiential learning. After graduation, Renee’ is interested in pursuing a career in the legal field with a focus on civil rights activism, advocacy, and criminal & educational policy reform.


You can nominate someone (not yourself) to be in the Spotlight. Send your nominations to Dean Antoinette Thomas ( every Thursday by 12 noon.

Quote's Corner

Tayari Jones (born November 30, 1970) is an American author and academic known for An American Marriage, which was a 2018 Oprah's Book Club Selection, and won the 2019 Women's Prize for Fiction. Jones is a graduate of Spelman College, the University of Iowa, and Arizona State University. She is currently a member of the English faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences at Emory University, and recently returned to her hometown of Atlanta after a decade in New York City. Jones was Andrew Dickson White Professor-at-large at Cornell University before becoming Charles Howard Candler Professor of Creative Writing at Emory University. Jones is a recipient of the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award for Debut Fiction, the Lifetime Achievement Award in Fine Arts from the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, the United States Artist Fellowship, the National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, and the Radcliffe Institute Bunting Fellowship. Her novel, Silver Sparrow, was added to the NEA Big Read Library of classics in 2016. She is also a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers and was inducted into the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame in 2018. In February 2018, Oprah Winfrey announced that her latest book club pick was Jones’ novel, An American Marriage. On June 5, An American Marriage was announced as the winner of the 2019 Women's Prize for Fiction.

Opportunites with Deadlines

Class of 2022 Class Awards
Nominations Due: Wednesday, April 13 by 11:59 PM

Nominations can be sent through this link.

Each year, the Class Trustees bestow three awards upon graduating students who have contributed significantly to the University. These awards will be presented at Valedictory Exercises on May 20 at 3:00 pm at the John Paul Jones Arena during this year's Finals Weekend. This year's awards are as follows: The Cultural Fluency Award, The Community Service Award, The 2022 Wahoo Award. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact Chesley Strickler or (540) 461-1219.


College Council Minerva Research Grants
Application Deadline: Monday, April 25 at 11:59 pm

Each semester, College Council offers research grants up to $2000 for exceptional research proposals from all areas of the College, including all CLAS majors. We are proud to once again offer our Minerva Grant for summer research. Interested students can fill out the application using this link for more information. Any questions can be directed to our grants email

2022 Pariveda Career Accelerator Program
Apply Here

Pariveda is launching the Pariveda Career Accelerator – a 6-week, virtual program open to Black and/or African American freshmen and sophomores of all majors interested in software development. The Pariveda Career Accelerator is designed to accommodate summer commitments (like work, internships, or classes) and will focus on personal development and expanding opportunities outside of the classroom. Scholars will get the opportunity to build relationships with Pariveda consultants and leaders and explore a career in technology consulting. Each week, scholars will learn about topics such as imposter syndrome, mentoring and networking, and goal setting through workshops and mentor-led discussions that they can apply to a future internship. Scholars will have the opportunity to interview for a summer internship or full-time role. I've also attached a program flyer with additional information. 

M.C. Dean Job Opportunity for 2022 and Recent Graduates
M.C. Dean, a firm that designs, operates, and maintains cyber-physical solutions for the nation’s most recognizable mission critical facilities, secure environments, and global enterprises. We are currently looking to hire 2022 graduates for Technical Writer/Proposal Writer positions. We operate under a hybrid work model, and the company is located in Tysons, Virginia.  Applicants must be U.S. Citizens. Here is the link with the job description on Handshake. Interested fourth years or recent graduates!

Apply to be a mentor for the 2022-2023 school year!
Deadline Extended!

Be a Big Sibling. Make a Big Difference. The Young Women Leaders Program (YWLP) and the Men’s Leadership Project (MLP) are community-based mentoring programs that pair UVA undergraduate students with middle school students from the Charlottesville area. By combining one-on-one mentoring with group activities that address students’ sense of self, scholastic achievement, peer relationships, and healthy decision-making, YWLP & MLP help empower middle schoolers as leaders in their schools and communities. For More Information Contact Name: Sarah Jenkins

Full-time UVA Presidential Fellowship for 2022 Graduates

The Presidential Fellow is a full-time administrative position for a student who will receive an undergraduate degree from UVA in Spring 2022 or a person who has recently received a UVA undergraduate degree. As a staff member in the Office of the President, the Presidential Fellow works on initiatives related to the President’s current, highest priorities while carrying out other essential duties related to the activities of the President’s staff. The Presidential Fellow will conduct research, coordinate outreach and communications, and manage special projects as assigned by the President, Chief of Staff, and other members of the President’s Office team. The Presidential Fellow reports to the Special Advisor to the President for External Affairs. For More Information Contact Name: Ashley Cochran, Senior Recruiter


Bridging Admissions 2022-2023 Mentee Applications

Bridging Admissions is a free mentorship program available for underrepresented minorities and first-generation college students who are currently applying to medical school. BA is currently recruiting medical students to participate as virtual mentors for their program! This is a student-run organization that started at UCSF but has mentees and mentors from all over the country. Becoming a mentor for Bridging Admissions is a great way to give back and make a positive change in the medical community. Mentors are paired with pre-med students where they meet virtually and help them with applications, personal statements, secondaries, and interviews while providing support and encouragement along the way. The time commitment is what you make it - you work with your student to find a schedule that works for both of you. Your guidance can instill confidence in these future physicians and help create a more diverse and representative community of future doctors! We have many mentee applications and are currently looking to recruit more mentors. If you are interested in joining our mentorship team, you can Sign Up Here, or fill out this Google Doc:  You can find more information on our website.

Associate Community Organizer
Positions begins: Monday, May 9, and Monday, August 8, 2022

Starting salary $40,500/year + benefits. Positions open in: Florida: Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Manatee County, Miami, Sarasota, St. Petersburg, Tampa; Kansas: Lawrence, Wyandotte County, Johnson County; Kentucky: Lexington; South Carolina: Charleston, Columbia; Virginia: Charlottesville, Richmond; Lead Community Organizer / Executive Director positions begin Fall 2021 in: Florida: Brevard County, Sarasota; Kansas: Wyandotte County. DART organizations are diverse coalitions that include communities of color, low-to-moderate-income communities and immigrant communities. We strongly encourage people from these backgrounds, as well as fluent Spanish speakers and DACA recipients, to apply. To apply or learn more about DART, visit or find us on Instagram and Facebook @theDARTcenter. Still have questions? Contact Moe or (602) 510-4658.

Ridley Scholarship Fund Awards Available to Non-Ridley Students Available
Ridley scholarships that extend beyond current scholars:



This Week in Black History

Did you know?  Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson became the first Black woman to be elevated to the Supreme Court. The Democratic-controlled Senate on Thursday, April 7, 2022, confirmed President Joe Biden's pick. The final vote was 53-47, with all 50 Democratic caucus members supporting Jackson, joined by Republican Sens. Susan Collins of Maine; Lisa Murkowski of Alaska; and Mitt Romney of Utah. In a symbolic moment, Vice President Kamala Harris, the first Black woman elected to her job, presided over the vote. The vote means Jackson will take office at the end of the court's current term — likely in June or July — when Justice Stephen Breyer is expected to step down.


Scholar Circle

OAAA Announcements & Services

Contact: Dean Thomas for more information

OAAA tutors meeting dates & times via In-Person & Zoom

OAAA Calculus & Statistics Tutoring with Travis Elliott
Email to schedule individual virtual sessions

OAAA Chemistry Tutoring with Yvette Gamor
Mondays - 5:00 pm-7:00 pm – (in person) W.E.B. DuBois Conference Room #2 Dawson’s Row
Email for Zoom appointments if needed.

OAAA Biology & Chemistry Tutoring with Kamryn Crowder
Wednesdays – 2:00 pm-4:00 pm – (in person) W.E.B. DuBois Conference Room #2 Dawson’s Row
Email for Zoom appointments if needed

OAAA Organic Chemistry Tutoring with Heran Tadesse
Thursdays – 4:30 pm-6:30 pm – (in person) W.E.B. DuBois Conference Room #2 Dawson’s Row
Email for Zoom appointments if needed


Contact: Dean Mason for more information on:

  • Black College Women (BCW) Book Club
  • Black Male Initiative (BMI)
  • Black President’s Council (BPC)
  • Black College Women (BCW) - In the Company of my Sister

Upcoming Events

Careers in Community Organizing
Wednesday, April 13 – 6:00 pm EDT / 5:00 pm CDT -- Sign up

DART will hold an online info session on to discuss careers in community organizing. All UVA students and alumni welcome, particularly those graduating by December 2022. DART trains professional organizers and community organizations how to work for social, economic and racial justice, including: holding police departments accountable, shutting down the school-to-prison pipeline, reining in predatory lenders, expanding access to primary health and dental care, prioritizing funding for affordable housing and job training, and fighting for immigrants' rights. Associate Community Organizer positions start August 8, 2022 and January 16, 2023 in cities below. Starting salary $42,500-$44,000 + benefits. Florida: Bradenton, Daytona Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Lakeland, Miami, Pensacola, Sarasota, St. Petersburg, Kansas: Kansas City, South Carolina: Columbia, Greenville, Virginia: Charlottesville, Richmond

Ben Williams: Historicizing Contemplative Pedagogy
Thursday, April 14 – 4:00 pm-5:30 pm – Nau Hall, Room 342

All are welcome to attend Ben Williams’s talk, “Historicizing Contemplative Pedagogy” Williams will take a cultural-historical look at Naropa University as a site for contemplative pedagogy, noting various streams of practice and defining creative tensions. This will be followed by a theoretical reflection on the possibilities and implications of contemplative practice within a curriculum that trains students to engage meditative traditions comprehensively. This entails reflecting on them as actionable sources of knowledge while also sustaining sensibilities and considerations deeply informed by the disciplines of religious studies and Indology. Free and open to the public. For More Information Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

Stillness in Motion: Contemplative Practice at McCormick Observatory
Friday, April 22 – 9:00 pm-10:00 pm –

Join us for this special Earth Day exploration April 22, 2022 from 9:00-10:00pm at the McCormick Observatory where we’ll experience the bounds of the cosmos and our own minds. We’ll start with a brief contemplative practice led by the Contemplative Sciences Center’s Ashtanga Yoga Program Manager, John Bultman. Then we’ll explore the cosmos through the lens of the historic 26-inch McCormick Refractor telescope guided by Astronomy Professor, Ed Murphy, where we will consider the bounds of our own relativity. Feel more grounded this Earth Day while putting life’s ups and downs into a broader cosmic perspective. For More Information: Contact Name: Kimberly Vo


Higher Education M.Ed. Program in collaboration with the Career Center: Acing the Interview Workshop
Friday, April 29 - 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm - Ridley 302

Presented By Michelle Ball. The greatest asset for interviewing is knowing how to prepare. This workshop will help you begin thinking about common interview questions and responses, what to take with you to the interview, and who to send a Thank You note to afterward. From a firm handshake to a strong closing statement, you’ll be well on your way to interview success. Please register in advance. Boxed lunches will be provided. For More Information. Contact Name: Said Aweis

Mindfulness Meetups
Mondays (7:00 pm-8:00pm) and Fridays (10:00 am-11:00am)

Each semester CSC and UVA's Counseling and Psychological Services department (CAPS) host Student Mindfulness Meetups— groups of students who meet for one hour weekly to engage in mindfulness practices in a safe and supportive space with an experienced facilitator. Regularly practicing mindfulness—taking the time to intentionally focus on the present moment without judgment—can help students feel and function better. For More Information. Contact Name: Kimberly Vol

Holding Space: Yoga and Meditation for All Bodies
Every Monday (Now – Monday, May 2, 2022) - 5:30 pm-6:30 pm

Explore a mix of gentle and yin yoga designed for all bodies. Make a fresh start with a smart combination of movement and mindfulness in a safe class offering light strengthening, stretching, breathing, and balance. This non-flow class is open to all shapes, sizes, abilities and gender including beginners coming to yoga for the first time. For More Information Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

Virtual Meditation on the Lawn
Mondays (Now–May 2, 2022) 7:45 am–8:00am EST

Virtual Meditation on the Lawn is a series of short, virtual, drop-in meditation or guided reflection sessions. These 15-minute sessions are led by Contemplative Sciences Center (CSC) instructors, other experienced facilitators, or special University guests. The program is open to the UVA community and anyone else interested in pausing to cultivate mindfulness, compassion, resilience, and a sense of belonging with others so inclined. For More Information Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

Mysore Ashtanga Yoga Program

Monday-Thursdays 6:30 am-8:30 am & Friday 6:30 am-7:30 am @ North Grounds Recreation Center, MP3 Our Ashtanga Yoga program and signature Mysore classes are led by Certified Instructor John Bultman. The goal of our program is to help people of all levels develop a sustainable yoga practice for greater health and well-being. For More Information. Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

T'ai Chi 
Every Tuesday (Now - Tue. May 3, 2022) -12:00 pm-1:00 pm

This class, co-sponsored with Compassionate Care Initiative (CCI), will cover the basics of T'ai Chi, a martial art characterized by soft, slow flowing movements of the torso and arms coordinated with weight shifts and steps. T'ai Chi emphasizes relaxation and is a form of meditation in motion that improves balance, muscle tone, and promotes stress reduction. Instructor: Hiromi Johnson for more information Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

Night Owl Yoga
Tuesday-Thursday and Sunday 8:00pm-9:00pm (ET)

Night Owl yoga classes are offered weekly on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday nights. All Night Owl Yoga classes are free for students and open to everyone with an IM-REC Sports gym membership: All UVA students, faculty, staff, and community members. Each class explores a slightly different style of yoga practice. Participants of all levels and experiences are welcome, including those who have no prior yoga experience. For More Information Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

BIPOC Student Meetup Group
Every Wednesday – 5:00 pm-6:00 pm

This facilitated student group is part of the Contemplative Sciences Center’s Flourishing While Black program and meets for one hour and is designed with BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) students in mind. Sessions are held over Zoom and begin with a brief introduction and include a mindfulness practice and debriefing. Any UVA student looking to engage in mindfulness practices in a safe and supportive space is welcome to join the group and attend on a drop-in basis. No previous experience required. For More Information Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

Yoga for Life
Every Wednesday (Now - Wed. Apr 27, 2022) - 5:30 pm-6:30 pm

Yoga can be practiced anytime, anywhere, by anybody. Discover how these ancient techniques can help you develop a deep type of listening — to your body, to your emotions, to your mind, and to others — that will help you to transform your life now and as long as you continue to practice. For More Information Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

Santosha for Sisters
Every Thursday (Now-Thu. Apr 28, 2022) - 7:30 pm-8:30 pm

This weekly Thursday evening class is part of CSC's Flourishing While Black program and is specifically designed for Black women and women-identifying students looking for an affinity space to flourish by using contemplative practices. Each class includes beginner yoga flow, guided meditation, and an opportunity for reflective discussion. All levels and experiences are welcome so please come as you are. For More Information. Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

Ashtanga Yoga: Counted Led Primary Series

Every Friday (Now - Fri. Apr 29, 2022) - 7:30 am-9:00 am

Our Ashtanga Yoga program and signature Mysore classes are led by Certified Instructor John Bultman. The goal of our program is to help people of all levels develop a sustainable yoga practice for greater health and well-being. For More Information. Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

Spring Yoga Book Club: Historic Roots of Yoga Practice

Every Fridays (Now-Fri. April 22) – 9:00 am-9:50 am (Except for March 4 & March 11)

Join our Spring Yoga Book Club—created for anyone interested in learning more about the history of yoga. The club meets virtually. This season, Ashtanga Yoga Program Manager John Bultman will facilitate discussion of two books: (1) Yoga Dharma, an introduction to the roots of yoga practice by Hamish Hendry, and (2) Hatha (Yoga) Pradipika, an important classical yoga text, authored by Svatmarama and translated by Brian Dana Akers. Once registered for the Spring Yoga Book Club, feel free to join drop-in for any of the discussions. For More Information Contact Name: Kimberly Vo